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Are Cousins the Worst Relatives?

It's a bad time to be a cousin.

Baseball's Alex Rodriguez said his cousin was the one who injected him with steroids. The Washington Nationals are embarrassed about the $1.4 million signing bonus they gave to a Dominican ballplayer who lied about his age. Carlos Daniel Alvarez Lugo said his cousin thought up the scheme.

Cousins: They're not as biologically close as brothers or sisters, but not as biologically distant as random friends. They're relatives, but without the crushing history that family implies. And they just may be the worst relatives out there.

Sure, they seem cool when you see them every year at the beach or around the Thanksgiving turkey. But isn't it usually a cousin who cajoles you into doing something stupid, like diving off the high dive or taking your first bong hit? Unless, of course, you're the one handing the bong to your cousins. That makes you the evil cousin.

And "evil cousin," it turns out, is slang for a crystal methamphetamine dealer who deals over the phone. At least according to the Urban Dictionary.

Don't even think about "kissing cousins," which sounds kind of sweet until you consider the genetic train wreck that it can lead inexorably to.

Do you agree? Are cousins nothing but evil demons bent on luring you into a life of crime?


I bet A-Rod is wishing his parents had been only children.

By John Kelly  |  February 26, 2009; 9:25 AM ET
 
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Comments

Usually they're partners in crime.

Posted by: RedBird27 | February 26, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Doesn't look like anybody agrees Wapo. Cousins appear to be the third most liked relative after grandparents and aunts/uncles. I guess most of our cousins aren't dealing meth by phone.

Posted by: bill3 | February 26, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

John, did you write this from West Virginia?

A group of my cousins set up a family reunion every three years and I always try to go cause it gives me a chance to catch up on all diffent branches of the family. For example, at the last one I found out my nephew was out of prison. One of my cousin's kids just had a baby, not married of course. And someone is always about to die or thinks they are. Just like walking onto the set of a soap opera.

Posted by: reddragon1 | February 26, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Not quite sure what this post is trying to achieve. As it is our social fabric in America is weak and getting weaker and this post seems to drive the last nail in the coffin.

9 out 10 times a person is own his/her own enemy as we often work against ourselves for no reason let alone cousin harming us.

Most often, a bad situation can diffused depending how we respond. I am not saying that one should kiss upto a relative but at the same token, one should not aggravate the situation.

Posted by: XMLMaestro | February 26, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

I have nine first cousins, 11 once removed, and several cousins in law. Never has one of them injected me with steroids, given me a bong hit (although I can't speak for my brother!), or sold meth! Granted, we have all gotten into our share of trouble but we manage to help each other out of it. Maybe it's Alex who is the 'evil cousin.'

Posted by: elizabethoc | February 26, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I realized I left out "a niece or nephew" as a choice. Can you have an evil niece?

Posted by: JohnFKelly | February 26, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

I've never looked at it this way, but I totally agree. The first times I ever drank alcohol, smoked a cigarette or did illegal drugs were with my cousins. They totally corrupted me!

Posted by: HonE | February 27, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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